|Paper title||Greenland ice sheet changes from space – two decades of rapid improvements by new satellite missions and processing methods|
|Form of presentation||Poster|
The Greenland ice sheet melt is a key essential climate variable of global significance due to the impact on sea level rise and the risk of future changes to global ocean circulation due to increased freshwater output. Satellite altimetry missions such as CryoSat, IceSat-2 and AltiKa have given new insight into the sources of rapid changes, and along with the launch of Sentinel-1, -2 and 3 generated even more spectacular results, especially for the routine mapping of ice sheet flow velocities by feature tracking and SAR interferometry. On top of this GRACE and GRACE-FO have delivered reliable mass changes of ice sheet drainage basins, spectacularly illustrating the highly variable ice sheet melt behaviour, with record melt events in 2012 and 2019. All of these data are available through the ESA Climate Change initiative as validated grids and time series, readily usable for more detailed investigations and research.
We illustrate the consistency of the data by doing joint inversion of several CCI data sets, augmented with independent airborne and GNSS uplift data sets. Results across all the data sources show how the melt regions are located at the ice sheet margins and major outlet glaciers, and also how the most active changing regions change over time, as a function of regional changes in summer temperatures and ice dynamics. The changing ice sheet melt are compared to meteorological models of surface mass balance, further confirming the strong link between ice sheet melt and regional weather conditions.